All Posts Tagged: inflation

U.S. Outlook: Inflation pressures moderate, but for how long?

Scott Anderson
Chief Economist

Recently released U.S. inflation data appear to support the Federal Reserve’s decision to pause in their interest rate hiking campaign. Overall  consumer price inflation slowed to a modest 1.5% in February, down from 2.9% in June 2018.

Candlestick chart

Much of the moderation in the headline rate over the past year has been due to declines in energy, transportation, and apparel prices. Core consumer prices, which exclude the volatile food and energy components, rose 2.1% in February, down from 2.3% late last year.

For more on this, see highlights of my report below, followed by a link to the full U.S. Outlook, delivered on March 15.

Key observations:
  • Annual producer price growth was as high as 2.8% in mid-2018, but has been trending down ever since.
  • Average hourly earnings increased 3.4% from a year ago in February, a post-recession high and a sharp jump from 2.3% growth back in October 2017.
  • Slower economic growth in 2020 is expected to begin pushing consumer inflation back below 2.0% yet again.

Read my full report.

U.S. Consumer Inflation

Read More ›

Instant Analysis: December FOMC Minutes

Scott Anderson
Chief Economist
A wide-angle photo of the Federal Reserve.

Despite the quarter point Fed funds rate hike that occurred at the end of the December FOMC Meeting, the minutes of that meeting reveal the dovish tilt that was already beginning to influence the FOMC’s view of the likely extent and timing of further interest rate hikes.

Read More ›

Instant Analysis: FOMC Decision for December

Scott Anderson
Chief Economist
Winter shot of Federal Reserve building through leafless trees.

The outcome of the December FOMC meeting was what we have been forecasting.

Read More ›

U.S. Outlook: What’s behind the oil price plunge?

Scott Anderson
Chief Economist
Large, very clean refinery at dawn. No human activity is visible.

Crude oil prices had been generally rising in 2018 before peaking at $76.24 on October 3.

Read More ›

U.S. Outlook: Can the U.S. consumer keep up the pace?

Scott Anderson
Chief Economist
Farmers market scene as several adults look over baskets of red, yellow, and orange tomatoes, peppers, and other vegetables.

You could say the consumer has been the engine of U.S. economic growth lately.

Read More ›